South Korea’s leading K-pop girl group, Blackpink, made headlines this week after its members were presented with honorary MBEs (Members of the Order of the British Empire), by King Charles of the United Kingdom.
Now, two Instagram reels posted on the official page of the UK’s royal family are going viral.
The award came during the state visit by South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, during which King Charles praised the global reach of Korean pop culture.
According to the UK Honours System the MBE is an award honouring, “an achievement or service in and to the community, which is outstanding in its field and has delivered sustained and real impact which stands out as an example to others.”
Blackpink members were awarded these honours for supporting environmental causes.
A video showing the medals being awarded, was posted on @theroyalfamily’s Instagram page, garnering over six million views in just two days.
The video’s caption read: “The King (King Charles), joined by The President and First Lady of the Republic of Korea, has welcomed special guests @blackpinkofficial to Buckingham Palace, as they are awarded Honorary MBEs.
“The K-Pop band have been awarded these honours in recognition of their role as advocates for the COP26 Summit in Glasgow 2021.”
“BlackPink encouraged millions of young people to engage with the global UN climate change conference and the topic of climate action.”
Blackpink’s four members, Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé, and Lisa were even name-checked by King Charles. Videos of the K-pop idols’ reaction, when their names were called out, were also shared by fans online.
As King Charles praised the members of the girl group for being advocates for the planet in his speech, the singers, listening from their seats at the state banquet in the palace ballroom, appeared visibly surprised.
"It is especially inspiring to see Korea’s younger generation embrace the cause, I applaud Jennie, Jisoo, Lisa and Rosé, better known collectively as Blackpink, for their role in bringing the message of environmental sustainability to a global audience as Ambassadors for the UK’s Presidency of COP26, and later as advocates for the UN (United Nations) Sustainable Development Goals,” said King Charles.
“I can only admire how they can prioritise these vital issues, as well as being global superstars,” he added.
Turning to the South Korean president, the 75-year-old monarch also made an amusing reference to the 2013 viral hit song by South Korean singer Psy and said: “Sadly, when I was in Seoul all those years ago, I am not sure I developed much of what might be called the Gangnam Style!”
Another video that went viral was that of the band at the royal ceremony, playing the Blackpink hit "Ddu-du Ddu-du".
The clever video caption referencing a line from the iconic 2004 movie Mean Girls won many hearts on Instagram. "On Wednesdays, we play Blackpink,” the caption read.
According to a report on people.com, the video shows the “military band of the first Battalion Welsh Guards on the palace forecourt during the changing of the guard”. The video has over eight million views.